The California Supreme Court has denied a request from anti-gay groups to place a stay on marriage equality in the Golden State, although litigation will continue on whether same-sex marriages can continue statewide.
On Monday, the state high court issued a decision denying a request from Alliance Defending Freedom and ProtectMarriage.com to place a stay on same-sex marriages. Those weddings resumed on June 28 following the ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court that anti-gay groups don’t have standing to defend California’s Proposition 8 in court, leaving in place an injunction on the measure from U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker.
Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign and one of the organizers of the lawsuit against Prop 8, praised the decision from the court to allow same-sex marriages to continue in California.
“Our opponents have failed in a desperate attempt to deny happiness and protections to lesbian and gay couples and their children and no amount of legal wrangling is going to undo that joy,” Griffin said. “Marriage equality has returned to the Golden State and just as David Blankenhorn, the star witness for Prop 8 came to support marriage equality, I hope others will open their hearts and minds and realize that marriage will soon come to all 50 states in this country.”
As part of their request for a stay, anti-gay groups maintained that Judge Walker’s injunction on Prop 8 applies only to plaintiff couples and not statewide as California Gov. Jerry Brown and Attorney Kamala Harris have interpreted.
The court set up a schedule on Friday to consider the argument posed by the anti-gay groups. According to the court website, opposition to arguments must be filed by July 22. Anti-gay groups then have until Aug. 1 to issue their reply.
Jon Davidson, legal director for Lambda Legal, called the argument “pure malarky.”
“The California Supreme Court previously held (in the litigation that followed San Francisco allowing same-sex couples to marry back in 2004) that county clerks and registrar/recorders are subject to the control and supervision of these state officials when it comes to the issuance of marriage license,” Davidson said. “Local officials are therefore bound to comply with the injunction by its express terms.”